POLYGAMY: DISCUSSIONS, INTERVIEW AND COMMENTARIES by Mama Khandi

Are the Afrikan potential melaninated organisms destroyed by the process of white supremacy and cultural imperialism? If so, how do the various institutions of the various factions of the infrastructure contribute to this destruction? Who benefits from such a deliberate and systematic attack? How is this benefit manifested?

We do not control any of the life sustaining institutions that control our lives. These institutions include but are not limited to education, child birth, food, clothing, shelter, health care, and the system of marriage. As such monogamous marriage is the only legal marriage construct within the imperialist and supremacist system.

The myth of white supremacy is just that. A Myth! As whites are suffering from white genetic survival crisis, it is imperative for them to give the impression that they are in control, when in fact, they are facing extinction. Their imperialism of Afrikans is to insure that our melaninated organism potential is neutralized. Some refer to this neutralization as “inferiorization” and “genetic potential that is destroyed.” (Welsing, p. 241) Since the spirit and soul can not be conditioned away from their own true potential of functioning and only the body and mind can be destroyed in their potential, our true potential is suppressed and driven deep within our soul and spirit, rumbling and waiting like a peace that won’t be still, to rise!

 

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It is insignificant if those reading "believe" or "disbelieve". Their belief is of no consequence to me. Polygamy exists and stands on it's own merit and a viable and ethical principle for Black family structure. It is said  that polygamy is underground. Well... lets talk about the underground movement. That, unfortunately, is a place i know too well as a Black Panther, PAC, RNA comrade. What is my point? We who fight the white supremacist system to live our lives and build a sovereign Black Nation, have been shot, shot at, raped, murdered, beaten, had our babies kicked out of our wombs, beaten into deafness, bombed, stripped on nation wide tv, lynched in prison cells, jailed as bigamists redefined away from our Ancestral inheritance of Polygamy, and incarcerated. i am not dead but other than that i have experienced all of it. Why stay above ground and be a "moving target"? (as my brother Gil Scott Heron says). 
This so called "discourse and incivility" that these folk who discuss the Family/Polygamy topic have shown me is nothing compared to the other stuff i have been thru/go thru. Their views are irrelevant in the face of real struggle. Polygamy is a part of the struggle that has made us a target of white supremacist attacks. 
These folk who "disagree" with polygamy are powerless to fight the REAL enemy white supremacy/cultural imperialism, so they direct that energy at me and my family/comrades; those of us who care about someone other than our selves. ...hmph... i ain't the one. These are the type of people who when the fbi/cia/police knock at their doors, THEY LET THEM IN! 
Aluta continua... ...Khandi, just a sista in struggle...

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Interview Ques. You chose your co-wife? How? Why? Isn't she the other woman? 

Yes, i chose my co-wife sista. How? hmmm... how? umph... There are various methods for choosing a co-wife sista. i simply established a sistahood relationship w/her years prior to asking her to be a part of our family. She and i agreed to not allow any brother to come between us as sistas. If We found ourselves attracted to the same brother, We would discuss it w/each other and approach the brother after discussing it w/some elders. That's basically what We did. We approached him. We approached his parents and ours. It came together. 
Why? Easy question. Probably the easiest question that i will get from you in this entire interview. Because i am an Afrikan! There is something very sacred and special about being Afrikan. Something above the norm. Something above average. Besides, i couldn't look in the mirror and see a jealous, possessive, envious, selfish, greedy, fearful, sista w/out compassion or w/out caring about my sista as much as i care about myself, looking back at me. Basically, i care... i care enough to share... Its not complicated. 

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Interview Ques. 

What about disease? How do you keep the man from behaving recklessly under polygamy? Are the polygamous men you know different from the men, women say are not able to handle one woman? Profile if you can a good polygamous man.
When you have the Ancestors and Elders giving you Blackup, the brothers infidelity is not a question. There is no fury as that of the Ancestors when one's mate runs amuck. i am not at liberty to discuss the details of ones punishment for such behavior, but there is a system of PUNISHMENT. As for disease, well... for every illness, there are herbal remedies. Also, there are remedies that one takes PRIOR to getting diseases that prevent that from becoming a reality. 
Polygamous brothas are men like all others, except they have been politicized and trained and embraced by the Elders and Ancestors to function in a righteous, principled and disciplined manner. Like everyone, they make mistakes, but they don't purposely go out messin' up, like sistas say "are not able to handle one woman," cause they have their potential in sight. Brothers who have been denied their Afrikan cultural asili/ethos/genisis, are not able to fulfill it in a mono context, much less in a poly reality. 
The brother in a polygamous relationship, to survive it, must inner/overstand that he is not an individual and reality is NOT segregative. Reality is wholistic. The Afrikan reality is 360 degrees. Circular, not linear. In other words, the brother inner/overstands that everything is related. What he does here affects something over there; what happens over there affects over here. He must inner/overstand that something he does that he "feels/thinks" is unrelated, IS related, and will have an affect either positive or negative. Therefore, he is responsible to view his life in wholistic terms. This for a brother is a question of Afrikan perception.  Diplomacy is an outgrowth of such perception.

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Interview ques. 

Mention polygamy and some women have visions of a 1,000 female hands grabbing at their men. i believe the lack of polygamy is a bigger threat than polygamy to women with men. Should women feel threatened by polygamous females? What is your experience?

Wheph... i have been working on this issue of polygamy for more than 30 years and have had only polygamous relationships. Though i have spent some monogamous time in polygamous marriages. Didn't like that mono time at all. Too easy to fall into selfish behaviors. Not a nice part of the personality. Also, when one functions polygamously in a monogamous time period, it leaves space for a sista to enter the relationship. My point? i felt far more threatened by the possibilities of my becoming a hoarding, selfish, possessive, jealous, living way below my potential b*tch! No number of women grabbing at "MY" man could challenge that fear. The ugliness that We carry within is paramount to all other fears. No! sistas have nothing to fear. Ain't nobody takin nothin' from them that wasn't theirs to start with. In other words, what is within our hubby that belongs to her is her's. What is within him, that belongs to Khandi, is Khandi's. What is within him that is hers in NOT mines. And even if she weren't here to claim that within him that is hers, it STILL WOULDN'T BE MINE. 
When i talk to sistas about polygamy who are monogamous, usually their first reaction is to curse me out. Cool. i overstand. After they calm down, then We talk. They curse some more. Cool. i overstand. Then We talk some more... and basically it is a non-ending cycle that lasts from days to years. i have never experienced a sista yet who over time, hasn't at some point come back to me and said, "Khandi, you b*tch, you were right."
i don't care that they use vulgarities. What i see, is a sista coming into her own potential about an issue that at one time was unthinkable for her. She can call me all the names she wants as long as she faces herself in the mirror and deals w/what she sees looking back at her. The longest struggle that i have had w/a sista on this issue was resolved after 20 years! She finally got it! What's the saying? Better late than never?

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Interview Ques: Given the grief you draw for supporting this topic, why continue to share your insights?

Well...  hmph... grief is a slang that in Richard Allen City (filthydelphia) We, mean that its a hassle, not that it has anything to do w/feelings. So, grief is something that i can deal w/or not deal with. My family and i sit down and assess if it is worth it to continue communicating w/folk about our polygamous family relationship. This topic is only a topic, a discussion, an idea, an opinion for some in this topic. For me, it is my LIFE that i am discussing and not merely a topic. There is a vast difference between talking about something and living it. If my sharings are insights, so be it. i simply share the ideo-eco-psyco-socio-spiritual-cultural-political historic facts. Period! Think of my sharings as three brains housed in one person, as my polygamous family makes input into my comments.

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Interview Ques. It's been asked on several occasions, what is your agenda? Beside your political views, what are you hoping to accomplish?

hmph... wheph... Simply put, i trust to give Afrikans some access to someone who is a polygamist. Maybe, our people can begin to see what the mindset of a polygamist is about, gain some insight into the lifestyle, principles, philosophy, etc. of those of us who live polygamously. 
Further, it is our hope (my family) that the Afrikans here will begin to comprehend family in broader terms and not limit themselves to only a monogamous definition. Inclusion is an agenda. Inclusion into the mindset of Afrikan people.
Simplistic? hmmm....

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Interview Ques. Can polygamy and monogamy co-exist?

My response has some qualifying parameters:

1. within what system? PGRNA? Washitaw? or usa?
2. within what dominant marriage system?
3. within what mindset?

i would say, these questions must be clarified so that the question is answered within the proper context. Until then...
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Interview Ques. - Talk about the extended family under your polygamous relationship.

Extended family... well... all of us, my co-wife-sista, hubby and i, have children from previous marriages. So, i guess that our children would be considered as extended to oneanother? We raise them as sisters and brothers...period! No half, step, inlaw, outlaw, none of that. One of my children filled out an application for something and it asked how many brothers and sisters did she have and she wrote 22. The person filling out the application said to her, "Your mother has 22 children?" Afua (my daughter) says, "No! You didn't ask how many children my mother has, you asked how many brothers and sisters i have!" Any child coming into our household is a full member of the family.
As for our parents, they have all met and interact w/oneanother. And the rest of the families, communicate w/us and interact w/oneanother. For example, i went to see some family members and a family member of hubby's went w/me. Like i said before in another question, We were all at the funeral of hubby's father who was Baba (Elder/father figure) to all of us. He would council all of us. Hubby's mom gets offended when you don't spend time w/her and call regularly etc. Co-wife-sista's mom calls us her children. My mom does the same and We all call them Mama. 
Basically, our blood families have become one big family and no one is extended or outside of the One. We are One in the One w/the One! Know what i mean?
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Interview Ques. - You speak in collective terms. Collectivism is not as faddish in the 90's/2000's. Is collectivism and polygamy related?

Yes, they are related but are not the same. Polygamy is a form of collectivism, but collectivism is not only polygamous. For example, there may be a collective of brothers and sisters who struggle together. They may or may not be polygamously married. But the polygamous family is a collective. Comrades are a collective. They may even think of themselves as a family. One of the principles of the Nguzu Saba is Collective work and responsibility. Polygamy may only be practiced by the unselfish and the insightful. Collectivism can be practiced by any number of folk who work for a common interest where selfishness could even be the motivating factor. 

Am i making any sense here? hmph...

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Interview Ques. - You hear repeatedly polygamy can only exist in agricultural contexts. Describe it in your urban/suburban experience.

...hmmm... polygamy exists in large numbers in many of the urban cities. i know more about polygamy in the urban cities than in any other environment in the u.s. Though i have lived in the country in my polygamous family. But i now live in the city, Looking forward to moving back to the country (LAND). 
Polygamy is some what different in the country than in the city. Cost of living is different in the country and less expensive than in the city. The concrete and asphalt makes some of the elements of the life style different. For example, more polygamous families in the cities live in the same house. While in the country, on land, there is more than one house for the sistas to have more of their own space. 
Most of the polygamists that i know, and i know many, are not in polygamous families for agricultural reasons. All of the polygamists that i know, 95% of them are Afrikan cultural traditionalists. In the cities, the family lives in one house. In the country, there are usually many houses, one for each wife on the same compound. It works either way, but the country living is better, because the tradition is easier to live, than in the city.
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Interview Ques. -Is polygamy a good deal for Afrikan people born in amerika? Why polygamy?

Polygamy is a better deal than any and all existing oppressive forms of relationships. Polygamy allows EVERYONE to enter into a respectable socially accepted relationship. There is spiritual growth and economic security for polygamous families. Polygamous 
families have less expense and unselfishness increases health and longevity for all involved. It eliminates lonesomeness and gives a sense of belonging to ALL. Polygamy
eliminates the stress of economics; thus NO sista is an individual alone worrying, striving, and depending on a racist society. The truth of the matter is, this feeling is the product of the way this racist society has conditioned us to think contrary to our own best interests. No Afrikan is doomed to the monogamous behavioral response that We are presently conditioned into. We are spiritual melaninated beings. The spririt of the Afrikan can NOT be conditioned. Therefore, We can manifest the proper response if We tap into the spiritual/melanin centers within. Only then, will We bring our lives into harmony w/the Divine Afrikan Kosmogony and Kosmological reality! 
The struggle for redefinition of family and the warm embrace in the arms of the Afrikan man continues!

Note: This interview was originally conducted some 10 years ago (approximately 30ADM [1996]) when i and a brotha named Mike co-facilitated the Afrikan amerikan bulletin board on Prodigy - the internet, Subject topic: Family/Polygamy. The introduction to the interview was not a part of the original interview but rather added at a later time when the interview was transcribed into writing. The original interview took place over the phone.

 

WORKS SITED

Cress Welsing, M. D. Frances, Chapter 20: “Black Children and the Process of Inferiorization,” The Isis Papers The Keys to the Colors, Chicago, Il: Third World Press, Inc., 1991.

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Emeweni Ake Ubona Y Afrika (She sees Afrikan in his Eyes

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